Chargers get revenge over RHS
By Gabe Whisnant
Published in Sports on April 26, 2006 2:12 PM
Earlier this year, Rosewood erupted for six runs in the last two innings to upset state-ranked Ayden-Grifton in extra innings in the Class 1-A Carolina Conference opener for both teams.
On Tuesday at the Eagles' field, the Chargers got redemption with their own explosive offense as the visitors slugged four home runs -- including two by winning pitcher Richie Turner -- in an 8-5 win.
"Hats off to Ayden-Grifton. We didn't hit our spots and they took advantage of it," Rosewood coach Josh Smith. "Their three, four and five hitters are pretty tough and they're solid from top to bottom."
With four games left in conference play, Rosewood (9-8 overall) slipped to 2-4 in the league, while the Chargers (15-5 overall) evened their Carolina slate at 3-3.
Facing Rosewood starter Kyle Bunn, Turner hit a two-run bomb to left in top of the first, then slugged a solo shot to center in the third to help his team jump out to a 3-0 lead. Ayden-Grifton threatened for more runs in the first three, but Bunn battled out of a handful of jams as the Chargers left five on the bases.
With help from the bottom of the order, the Eagles capitalized on Ayden-Grifton's inability to extend their lead. In the bottom of the third, seven-through-nine hitters -- Kevin Shanle, Matt Godwin and Taylor Allen -- posted three straight singles against Turner.
Allen's base hit scored Shanle to put Rosewood on the board, before lead-off hitter Trey Kriger followed with an RBI triple to right center, then later raced home on an outfield error to tie the game at 3-3.
The third proved to be the only inning the Eagles would score on Turner as the right-hander finished with six strikeouts against no walks. Turner allowed just two earned runs in five innings of work and picked up the win.
Ayden-Grifton's Geronnie Gay drove in three of his team's last five runs -- providing a double in the fifth off Bunn and a two-run homer to left in the seventh against Allen, who came on to toss the final inning.
Mike Eubanks also hit a two-run blast for the Chargers, who had a five-homer game in a loss to North Johnston.
"I was glad to see our offense gel tonight. We've been trying to regroup since losing Matt Tripp (.400, 6 HR) for the season a couple of weeks ago," Ayden-Grifton coach Chris Ross said. "We're trying to bounce back now ... not so much emotionally, but trying to juggle our lineup and make up for losing our clean-up hitter."
The late offensive barrage proved key as Rosewood battled for two runs in the bottom of the seventh against reliever Alan Wainright, who hit Kriger and Goss Kendall with his first two pitches of the inning. Kriger scored on a wild pitch, while Kendall came around to score on an RBI groundout by David Smeltzer.
Looking for a change of pace, Ross called on off-speed pitcher, Pameer Angar, to relieve Wainright. The move paid off as Angar got the final two outs of the game -- pitching around a walk to finish off the win.
Bunn endured the loss, finishing with five strikeouts and one walk with six earned runs on 10 hits.
"Kyle is our work horse. We put the ball in his hands, and I think he did a great job," Smith said. "He left a couple up, but the boys stepped up behind him and gave him some confidence."
The Eagles return to action today at home against Goldsboro in non-conference action, before traveling to North Johnston on Friday in league play.
Ayden-Grifton 201 012 2 -- 8 12 3
Rosewood 003 000 2 -- 5 8 1
Leading hitters -- Ayden-Grifton -- Richie Turner 2-3, 2 Hrs, 3 RBIs, 4 runs; Mike Eubanks 1-4, HR, 2 RBIs; Geronnie Gay 3-4, HR, 2B, 3 RBIs; Tyler Dunn 2-4. Rosewood -- Trey Kriger 1-3, 3B, RBI, 2 runs; Kevin Shanle 2-3; Taylor Allen 1-3, RBI.
IP H R ER BB SO
R. Turner (W) 5 6 3 2 0 6
A. Wainright 1 1/3 2 2 2 0 0
P. Angar (S) 2/3 0 0 0 1 1
K. Bunn (L) 6 10 6 6 1 5
T. Allen 1 2 2 1 0 2
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